Do PT and Massage Therapy Work Together?
Short answer....yes! But please humor me and read on anyway...
How many times have you received physical therapy and thought, "The body work part feels so good! I wish I could have this done for an hour on my [insert injured body part here]."
For me, it was my shoulder. I have a torn rotator cuff, and the deep tissue massage on the bicep, pectorals and infraspinatus (back of my shoulder) always felt ah-mazing, but was so short lived within an hour appointment. We needed to get to those exercises.
Physical therapists need that hour to assess your movement and functionality of your muscles and find the cause (or causes) of your pain. They figure out how and why your body is having a problem, and prescribe a program of exercises to strengthen your muscles and reduce pain. Sports massage therapists spend the hour analyzing the way the tissue feels, and promote healing within the tissue. We break up lines of tension in the connective tissue, directly address knots and adhesions in the muscles, and stimulate new cell activity with our techniques.
We don't do the same thing, but we have a lot in common. When both massage therapy and physical therapy are paired together, you have the potential to reach your recovery goals faster and more effectively.
Ask your PT for their favorite massage therapy referral. And if you're in Rhode Island, consider Composure Sports Massage. Happy healing!